I made great use of a conference call this morning and did a 50 minute stationary count from the yard as the 23 mph winds from the south jump started things in eastern Kane County.
I scored a few overdue yardbirds (COHA, ROPI), but also snagged a very nice addition in the form of a spanking Red-shouldered Hawk that drifted its way north just west of my yard. The best part was that the RSHA also was a Kane County bird for me (#201)!
Here's the 22 species I managed in 50 minutes (5 yardbirds bolded):
Kickapoo Ave and vicinity (Kane Co.), Kane, US-IL
Mar 6, 2012 10:10 AM - 11:00 AM
Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) 24
Common Merganser (Mergus merganser americanus) 2
Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) 1
Cooper's Hawk (Accipiter cooperii) 1
Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo lineatus) 1
Red-tailed Hawk (Eastern) (Buteo jamaicensis borealis) 1
Sandhill Crane (Grus canadensis) 4
Ring-billed Gull (Larus delawarensis) 3
Rock Pigeon (Columba livia) 1
Red-bellied Woodpecker (Melanerpes carolinus) 1
Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus) 2
White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis) 1
American Robin (Turdus migratorius) 1
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris) 2
Dark-eyed Junco (Slate-colored) (Junco hyemalis hyemalis/carolinensis) 1
Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis) 5
Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus) 1
Common Grackle (Quiscalus quiscula) 1
House Finch (Carpodacus mexicanus) 4
Pine Siskin (Spinus pinus) 6
American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis) 2
House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) 6
2013 and beyond
It's pretty simple: the most birds seen or heard from one's yard during 2013 will be the "winner". Want in? O.k....then do it despite that.
2013 promises to be a lot less mean but still a carbon-free birding competition, even if slightly less exciting than a MEGA x EPIC hybrid.